Heeding the government’s health advisory, the Philippine Superliga has postponed its Fans Day originally set this Sunday, following the global outbreak of the novel coronavirus.
PSL president Philip Ella Juico yesterday said they are putting premium over the safety and welfare of the athletes, coaches, and spectators and will reset the Fans Day which was initially scheduled at the Activity Center of Robinson’s Place in Ermita, Manila to a latter date.
All eight competing teams were supposed to show up for an afternoon of games, fun, and surprises as a kickoff activity for the brand new season of the PSL starting with the import-flavored Grand Prix on February 22.
Reigning champion Petron and other heavy contenders like Cignal, Chery Tiggo, F2 Logistics, and Generika-Ayala were to give fans a preview of their respective rosters.
New-look Sta. Lucia, PLDT Home Fibr and Marinerang Pilipina were also to reveal new recruits.
But with the Department of Health advising to avoid coming up with large gatherings to prevent the spread of the deadly virus that already infected more than 60,000 people in China and 25 other countries, the league decided to put the welfare of its fans above all.
“The number of those infected by the novel coronavirus is spiking while governments of affected countries are trying to contain its spread,” Juico said.
“With this, it is only logical, and responsible, for us to cancel our Fans Day this Sunday to keep any untoward incident from happening. Although we want it to go on as planned, we have to put special premium on the safety and welfare of our athletes, coaches, officials, fans and other stakeholders.”
The PSL is not the only league that had to make some adjustments due to the outbreak of the deadly pulmonary disease.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association and University Athletic Association of the Philippines halted their respective tourneys while the Philippine Basketball Association deferred the opening of its 45th season from March 1 to March 8.
Juico’s federation, the Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association, was also affected as the International Amateur Athletics Federation decided to scrap the staging of its World Athletics Indoor Championships in Nanjing, China.
“The world is adjusting just to curb the outbreak of this epidemic,” Juico said.
“We are doing our best to make sure that everybody will be safe and protected.”